Fifth Grade

Fifth Grade

A Story by LL2



In fifth grade, I was in Mrs. Palkot’s class.  I hated that woman with a passion I had never before felt, and have never since felt.  Mrs. Palkot was a liar.

In fifth grade, my dad was an out of work alcoholic.  Heading out the door to walk to school one morning, I knocked a glass off the counter, caught it, but spilled orange juice on the floor.  “Damn it!” he screamed from the living room.  “If you ever do that again, I’ll kill you!  F**k that.  I’m tired of this.  Get out of here.  If I ever see you again, I’ll kill you”  I looked over to the closet where I knew he kept a gun.  “Yeah, it’s there.  Waiting for you.”.

Shaking like a leaf, I picked up my backpack and left for school.  I know my feet must have moved, one in front of the other, but it wasn’t from a conscious decision.  Automatic pilot brought me to school, put my backpack away, and sat me down at my desk.  Mrs. Palkot appeared, kneeling next to me. In my own messed up world, I missed the pledge of allegiance and the warm up for the day.  She invited me to sit on the floor with some other students, closer to the overhead.  I stared at the assignment.  There were numbers, but I couldn’t have told you what they were.

The next thing I knew, everyone had left for lunch.  Mrs. Palkot sat down on the floor across from me.  “What’s wrong?...      You can trust me.    



“I can tell you a secret?” 

“Of course”

The story came out.  She lied.  Within moments, or so it seamed, I was in a room with my mom, the principal, the school counselor, and several police officers.

My mom painted the picture of perfect parents who try so hard but have a child who keeps lying for attention.  You know how imaginative only children are.  My dad didn’t kill me when I came home, but he beat me with a golf club as punishment for telling.

I hated Mrs. Palkot.  At first, I acted out mildly.  I circled words in some of her novels during silent reading time and connected them together.  It was hard sometimes to get a sentence put together, but I remember one I was very proud of.  Teacher, your but " b-u-t loves to yell from dusk to dawn.  That later became the title of a song I wrote about her.  I got sent to the principal’s office after one of the boys, Jason, just as bad as I was, found it and copied the lyrics onto the overhead in music class.

I challenged every explanation to everything, talked only when I wasn’t supposed to, and when ever I had to trace a shape, point to a math problem or scratch my face, I made sure to use my middle finger.

My mom was called up to the school again.  Mrs. Palkot suggested that as punishment for my misguided behavior, I serve detention after school every day until my mom could pick me up on her way home from work.  That way, she could give my mom a progress report of the day’s activities face to face.  My mom agreed.  I hate, I mean hate this woman, and now I have to spend an extra two hours with her every single day?

It was a long, miserable, rest of the year.  I did not give up.  I did not relent.  Neither did she.  Instead of songs, I wrote books, complete with illustrations of her hairy mustache.  When she caught me and took them up, instead of yelling, she took out one of the pop-sickle stick yarn picture frame things Katharine the suck up always made for her, and she framed my picture.  During detention, I refused to talk to her.  She sat down right next to me and read my sentences from her novels, genuinely laughing at the clever ones.  I never heard an ounce of resentment, anger, or irritation in her voice.  That made me hate her more. 

Seventeen years later, during my year as a fifth grade teacher, I found myself framing pictures of my mustache. 


© 2010 LL2

Author's Note

I have a bunch of short autobiographical stories that I would eventually like to put together in a memoir to be published. This is one of the earliest ones chronologically in my life. I'm not sure how effective the wording and style is. I have been criticized as being too rushed in my stories.

My Review

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Was this true? Did this actually happen to you? If it didn't, then that shocks me because this is a very realistic piece! You were a bit rushed, but then again if you just basically pulled it from your past memories, then this was very well written!

Posted 14 Years Ago

This was pretty good. Well detailed but rough on a few edges- which a good proof read can fix.

I hate, I mean hate this woman, and now I have to spend an extra two hours with her every single day?

You could emphasize the second hate by italicizing it or adding a comma after it.

It was a long, miserable, rest of the year. I did not give up. I did not relent. Neither did she.

But I did not give up. I did not relent, and neither did she.

Over all it was very interesting. Very realistic. And a tip would be to read your work out loud so to see if it 'sounds' right if you know what I mean. These are just simple suggestion, I still have a lot to learn about description too.
And sometimes rushed is good. But so it details. Something I have learned recently. Try to incorporate as much detail as required but still maintain a good story line. =]


Posted 14 Years Ago

omg~ u remember every detail from ur past!! i could only remember parts of my childhood especailly painful memories~~~~~~~~~

Posted 14 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

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3 Reviews
Added on April 6, 2010
Last Updated on April 7, 2010
Tags: child abuse, education, mentor, healing, alcohol



amateur writer hoping to down the road publish a book of poems, a novel, and an autobiography (have to live a little more for that last one) more..